President Edgar Lungu says former Southern Province Minister Daniel Munkombwe has left a lot of lessons for Zambians and he will be remembered for selflessly serving the country.
And President Lungu revealed that Munkombwe’s dying wish was that the Head of State attends his funeral.
Speaking during Munkombwe’s burial, President Lungu described him as an illustrious political luminary.
“When Mr Munkombwe was admitted to the University Teaching Hospital, I was moved by his condition and I therefore instructed the Minister of Health to evacuate him to South Africa for specialist treatment. The treatment in South Africa improved his condition, and I was happy to have lunch with him on his return. My desire was to see good old Daniel recover, and back in the flock to shepherd the people of Southern Province in the ways you only knew better. But death has robbed us that opportunity. The death of this illustrious political luminary is therefore a major loss across the political divide. I received the news of his passing with great sorrow. Whilst at 86, he left us so many political examples, great lessons we all can benefit from, we still would have yearned for more but the mystery of death is beyond our comprehension, so we can only repose our faith in the giver of life, God almighty. Zambia has lost three leaders in a space of one month. Last Saturday, we were putting to rest Hon Victoria Kalima, Minister of Gender and the week before, we were mourning Lusaka Mayor, Mr Wilson Kalumba, and now we are mourning Mr Daniel Chibbwalu Munkombwe,” President Lungu said.
“I was informed by his family that Hon Munkombwe, during his last days expressed his earnest wish and desire that I should attend his funeral. Accordingly, I am here to honor his wish and to share fellowship with the entire fraternity gathered here to honor the spirit of our departed statesman. I am happy too, to note that your son Chibbwalu is here and taken charge of your instructions that you should be mourned as a unifier, statesman and freedom fighter above any political inclinations. We remember you comrade Daniel Chibbwalu Munkombwe, as one of the founding fathers of the nation owing to the role you played in the liberation of this country. your life was filled with the spirit of unification and love for mother Zambia.”
He said Munkombwe exhibited selflessness in his life.
“There is no dispute about the fact that the late Daniel Chibbwalu Munkombwe was a great leader, and gallant freedom fighter who among others like Dr. Kenneth Kaunda, Grey Zulu, Arthur Wina, Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula and many others, liberated this country from the yoke of slavery and minority rule to independence. He worked as a political organizer and administrator for the African national congress (ANC) in Northern Rhodesia. He was a unifying factor in Southern Province because of his character, which saw him serve in the United National Independence Party (UNIP), Movement for Multi-party Democracy (MMD) and the current Patriotic Front (PF) government. The man we are putting to rest today, was a great and seasoned leader who had love for this country. He served in the UNIP government under our first president, Dr Kenneth Kaunda in various positions such as member of parliament for Choma central constituency for 19 years. From 1983 to 1998, he served as minister of state in the ministry of agriculture and water development, tourism, lands and natural resources and cabinet minister for decentralization. As we continue to embrace the “one Zambia one nation” motto, which Mr Munkombwe supported throughout his tour of duty, let us all stay united and give him the sendoff of a gallant freedom fighter and distinguished servant of the people. He exhibited selfless service and he always demonstrated commitment to social justice and equality for all Zambians. let us emulate his selfless character and his positive attitude towards working for the betterment of mother Zambia in whatever capacity he was called upon to serve. Go well dear friend, go well great son of our country, Zambia. as president of the republic, it remains my duty to ensure that your legacy lives and the name Daniel Chibbwalu Munkombwe is firmly engraved in the archives of our great nation,” said President Lungu.